I hope this finds you as well as is remotely possibly.
I am looking out at a gloriously clear winter sky with frosted plants and bronze coloured trees. How lucky I am.
Yesterday was one of those days when it was extremely clear to me that living with ME can present us with having to make really tough decisions.
There was a family gathering of descendants of my grandmother Keetje Kleijne. I had plans to go to Holland for this and to meet my niece Vera's first baby Linsey.But as I had felt so unwell the past while, I hadn't booked a ticket. To be honest, in the past few days I felt relieved not to have to travel to Holland. But then when it comes to the actual day I wondered what it would be like to be among cousins and their families that I haven't met properly for years...
Also there was a months mind mass for my dear friend Paddy, see a very special man post. Friends had organised a gathering after the mass. I wanted to be there. I longed to be among his friends and family and join in, in celebrating the life that Paddy lived.
The reason why I decided not to go was to protect myself from the many flu and vomiting bugs that are doing the rounds around town...
A very tough decision. Even when I had decided not to go I still wondered if it was the right choice.
To be honest, I felt sad, very sad.
But... there is always a but...
Some cousins in Holland had created a direct link through Ustream so the cousins like myself who live abroad were able to at least view the happenings at the party. I saw, and heard, my brother Hans play with his band; I saw Vera and her baby Linsey, and saw lots of other people too and we managed to communicate via "texting" or whatever the word is.
So I was there in a way.
Then just before I was on my way to bed, two friends Mary and Margaret, who were behind organising the gathering for Paddy, came to visit to tell me how the night went. So again I was there in some way.
Pat Kiely showed a video of Paddy filmed during my book launch. (Hope to see it soon myself and share it with you here). The room where the gathering was had a fireplace in it which Paddy had made a long time ago. The pub owner told of memories when Paddy had set up a youth group in Lismore, he was one of the participants when a young teenager.
Happy thoughts. I am glad to have heard some of them.
So although I had to make tough choices, I felt included in both events.
Thank you all!